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tv   NOW With Alex Wagner  MSNBC  January 30, 2013 12:00pm-1:00pm EST

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deputy mayor howard wilson, katrina vanden heuvel, and "new york times" reporter david carr is making his debut. wayne lapierre is testifying before the senate judiciary committee as part of a panel that includes mark kelly, husband of gabby giffords. before testimony began, giffords made a plea for action. >> violence is a big problem. too many children are dying. be bold, be courageous. americans are counting on you. >> kelly followed, arguing for restrictions on magazine clips, enhanced mental health care, and advanced background checks. >> we're both gun owners, and we take that right and the responsibilities that come with it very seriously, but rights demand responsibility, and this right does not extend to
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terrorists, it does not extend to criminals, and it does not extend to the mentally ill. >> while wayne lapierre struck a posture less combative than previous press conferences, his views remain questionable, calling for an immediate blanket of security at schools, lapierre dismissed universal background checks, saying criminals would never submit to them. chairman leahy pressed lapierre on background checks and whether and how the nra head had changed his mind on closing gun show loopholes. >> should we have mandatory background checks at gun shows for sales of weapons? >> if you're a dealer, that's already a law. >> that's not my question, please, mr. lapierre, i'm not trying to play games here, but if you could, it would help, just answer my question. >> senator, i do not believe the way the law is working now, unfortunately, that it does any good to extend the law to
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private sales between hobbyists and collectors. >> so, you do not support mandatory background checks at all in instances at gun shows? >> we do not, because the fact is, the law right now is a failure the way it's working. >> howard wilson, 9 in 10 americans support background checks. what planet is wayne lapierre on? >> well, he's clearly representing the gun lobby and the leadership of the gun lobby, which is many respects out of sync and out of membership of the nra. the polling we've done and the mayor have done shows members of the nra, rank and file members, gun owners, parents, support many of the reasonable checks that people are talking about, the gun show loophole closure, for instance and so many others. wayne lapierre, he's a washington lobbyist, and he speaks very well on behalf of
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his colleagues in washington at the nra headquarters, but they do not speak for all of the nra members, and they certainly do not speak for the vast bulk of the american people. >> the nra is essentially a kind of place where gop operatives, hacks, lobbyists, go to do their doings. you know, as said, wayne lapierre is out of step. republican pollster frank lunds shows a majority, 78% of nra members, want universal background checks. the problem is, they still have -- they can do fearmongering. they can put fear into these congress people and senators. what's interesting to me, you need the people's mobilization, but you're also seeing on the state level, governors, many of whom are aspiring to run in 2016, almost all the governors, democratic governors, new york, maryland, colorado, are speaking out and acting as governor cuomo
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did effectively last month. >> there's also, david, the question -- i'm not one that tries to unpack the ideological arguments made by wayne lapierre, but effectively, we shouldn't have these background checks because criminals won't subject themselves to them, then why have seat belts, why have speed limits? people are just going to break the law, so why have a law? it's fundamentally flawed, that argument, and i think, to the broader point, is the nra, we talk about the power that they have, but i do think you're seeing something here where there is a change. we are witnessing some kind of cultural change here with regards to guns. we have not had a continued conversation about gun safety laws in decades like we are now. and the question is whether the nra heads are going to be on the right side or the wrong side of history. >> i think when we have a congresswoman who's also a victim of gun violence speaking in halting tones about the effect of having weapons out
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there with large-capacity clips that almost anyone can access, we're having a new moment. we've never seen anything like that. i mean, if i was involved in the gun debate, i'd probably rather have congressman gifford talking for me than wayne lapierre. what he's fighting against, and you can understand the impulse, the reflex, which is incrementalism. if we let them have this one bite of the apple, then they are going to want the whole apple. there's another word for incrementalism, it's called compromise. it's politics, right? we did have an assault weapons ban. we don't now. things have changed. i think, as you point out, and that's what we do in politics. we go back and forth, and it doesn't mean we're making a wholesale grab for the second amendment. the discussion is joined in a new way. >> when you have the parents of a young boy who was killed in newtown coming to testify, and you have parents and brothers and sisters and mothers and
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fathers around this country looking at that, as david said, there is a cultural cyclical change. i do think the nra is banking on what it has done traditionally, and let us hope our culture has shifted, which is to slow things down. as lyndon johnson saw a different time in our history, speed was of the essence. i think that is their, you know, trade tactic, and we have to, i think as citizens, as people, as mothers and parents and people, make sure that they don't do that again. >> i mean, let's talk about what mayor bloomberg is doing. we cannot sort of short change the importance of his efforts, and that's not just because you're sitting on set with us, howard. but if you look at mayors against illegal guns, bloomberg's signature initiative, now you're employing republican lobbyists, which is a brilliant strategy here. there have been 159 new mayors who have signed on since newtown, making it almost 900
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mayors part of this effort. again, there are multiple pieces to this argument, there's a citizens argument, parents argument, there's a government piece. the fact that you have mayors coming out here, legislative officials, people who are in elected office saying, we have got to change, seems to be a really powerful piece of the puzzle. >> the mayor said the hardest part of his job, literally, thankfully, those few instances, but they do happen, he has to go to a hospital at 3:00 in the morning because a police officer has been shot and he has to inform the police officer's spouse that the police officer might not be coming home. and that's what mayors do. the job of mayors is to keep people who live in their city safe. they understand this in a very deep, emotional way. they are responsible for their citizens directly. you mention all of the elements coming into play. the other one, of course, is electoral.
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the super pac spent $10 million, did quite well. just today went up with an ad in the special election in illinois to replace jesse jackson, jr., one of the candidates has received high marks from the nra, does not support the president's assault weapons ban, and the mayors super pac is targeting ads to make sure the voters in that race know who's on their side and who is not. >> i think the limits of the reach and impact mayors can have, and all due regard to the mayors' leadership on this issue, both rhetorical and practical, is sort of manifested in chicago. you've got pretty much a total ban on private ownership of guns. you have to register, go through all sorts of hoops, but because they are surrounded by a sea of weaponry, it turns out, again and again, this is a national issue, the mayors can have an impact, but again and again, if we want something significant to
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take place, they are going to have to thread the needle on what is an amazingly partisan issue. i mean, there's nothing that sends people scrambling for the hills. >> i'll say two things, in terms of the federal background checks, the new york times writes making background checks universal is no less vital. this is the chief goal of gun control groups. the proliferation of handguns used in most gun violence, particularly in cities. this debate has in large part centered around massacres like aurora and newtown, but gun violence in major cities is a huge problem. that would be one thing that would focus the proliferation of illegal handguns and maybe stricter penalties for having one. >> and the interstate trafficking. the mayors against illegal guns have put out a program, for many years, since 2009, and one of those is to enforce interstate trafficking laws, which bring handguns into a city like chicago, which has strong city and state laws. >> the mayors are very well
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aware that guns travel across municipal lines and state lines, which is why you can take many effective steps in your own city, but you need a national response in order to dry up the supply of illegal guns coming from places that don't have the kind of strong laws that new york city does and chicago does. >> to david's point about the sort of partisan divide on this, i thought this was incredible, there's a letter from 28 of the 29 sheriffs in utah. as the dually elected sheriffs of our counties, no federal officials will be permitted to descend upon our constituents and take from them what the bill of rights, in particular amendment number two, has given them. we, like you, swore an oath to protect and defend the constitution of the united states, and we are prepared to trade our lives for the preservation of its traditional interpretation. >> with all due respect, don't lift them up as an example. seems they've been astute in the politics of meeting with law enforcement chiefs around this
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country. i think there is a kind of transpartisan coalition you could build at this time. maybe not around the ban on assault weapons, but around a series of measures that would have real effect. when you have the nra as the adversary of law enforcement chiefs, that's a position you want the nra in. >> the real prize in debates like this often people who use guns for a living. we convey expertise from them. we believe they are willing to step towards someone who has a gun, so while what the sheriffs of utah said is important, i don't think as katrina points out, it is a general consensus in the law enforcement community that we need to stand down and do nothing. i think again and again trying to get the people most hopped up about it and think that one step is going to lead to another step is going to lead to rhetoric, like which is not really very temperate. it makes me feel like -- do you
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mean we shornt even discuss this, wait until the bodies pile a little bit higher? >> i don't know at what point. >> human beings have been stacked like hardwood, and theaters and schools have been turned into kill zones. we are having a moment nationally, locally, everywhere. if this isn't a good time and a right time to talk about both the value and the limits of the second amendment, i don't know what is. >> you talked about the terrible tragedies, the mass killings that, obviously, in some respect catalyzed this moment we're in politically, but we have one of these a day across the country in terms of the number of people shot. 33 people are shot every day in this country, some of them, obviously, new york and other places, but also in rural places, suburban places. we have one of these tragedies, they just occur everywhere and not in one place. >> to david's point, if the time is not now, when is the time? after the break, president obama says the time is now for comprehensive immigration
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reform, but for house republicans, the time may be never. we'll talk lower chamber citizenship tests with texas congressman joaquin castro when he joins us live next on "now." [ male announcer ] citi turns 200 this year. in that time there've been some good days. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪
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now, the good news is that for the first time in many years, republicans and democrats seem ready to tackle this problem together. i believe we are finally at a moment where comprehensive immigration reform is within our grasp. >> bipartisanship and a funct n
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functioning congress? not totally. we're not going to get immigration done this year, let's cut the b.s. this is about 2014 and 2016. the day after president obama outlined his proposal for immigration reform, senator marco rubio journeyed into the limbaugh lions den to reaffirm the base he and the president aren't linking arms just yet. >> the president has a decision to make. if today becomes the beginning of a bidding war where he tries to be even more liberal than members of his own party and the senate, we know what his intentions are. i don't think that's a good development. the president will take us in a direction i don't think is good for america. i'm trying to do what i can with already a tough situation. >> afterwards, limbaugh swooned in only the way the rush-inator can, folks. >> is that guy good or what, folks? marco rubio. that was impressive.
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i'll say this, too. here's a guy who does not fear talk radio. he embraced it. >> so, had marco rubio won over the right wing flank's commander in chief on the need for comprehensive immigration reform? no, not really. not at all, actually. >> the bill is amnesty. there's no common ground here to find compromise. we're not talking about compromise. somebody's going to win and somebody's going to lose this. it's like the israelis and palestinians or anything else, but we don't have anything in common. >> if rush remains unconverted perhaps the demographic disaster facing the gop will remain cause for action on immigration, or perhaps now. according to the national review, some on the right is questioning whether it's worth it. republicans should take a deep breath before rushing into a grand bargain. don't walk the plank on immigration because romney only got 29% of the hispanic vote and
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sell out on deeply held conservative principles to bump that up to 33%. joining us now from san antonio, texas, congress juman joaquin castro. welcome. >> thank you, thank you, alex. >> congressman, i have many questions. first is, what do you make of the prospects of comprehensive immigration reform, specifically as it relates to the house. we've seen a linking of arms, lower ch what is your read on their ability to come together with democrats and vote for some kind of reform on immigration? >> sure. i'm actually hopeful that we can do it, and i think that we can. there's incredible momentum to get something done. i think the election in november demonstrated that, and i also think that it's promising that
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in the last few major votes where you've had bipartisan coalitions, speaker boehner has dropped his use of the informal rule, which has alieued for these bipartisan coalitions to come together, so i would disagree with whoever the gop aid was, and i think we can get this done. >> obviously, a huge part of this is animated by the fact the republicans got a drubing, which is a euphemistic term at best, among latin voters. my question to you as a latin elected representative, how much good will can the republicans win if a bill isn't passed? let's say there's obstruction in the house and nothing goes through. does that help them build a bigger tent going into 2014, 2016? >> well, i think the biggest -- the worst mistake that they could make is to start along this path and be insincere about it. i think if the latino community and the larger american community senses that the party, that the republican party, is
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insincere about this attempt and can't get this done, then it could spell even bigger problems for them later. >> that, and i want to bring in our panel here, david, that will require a certain amount of discipline on the part of some republicans. we talked at length yesterday about a memo that was circulated to house republicans in terms of suggestions, don't call them illegals, don't mention the term anchor babies, the fact that has to be mentioned at this point in the game is a testament to how far some members of the republican party have to go on this. >> they do get a little bit, as howard was saying during the break, nothing like an election to provide a little bit of a corrective to long-held beliefs. that -- there was a fundamental insight, which is they are working their way toward being an institutionalized minority party over a landscape that's changing beneath their feet. i think the congressman makes a great point in that there has to
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be a sincerity of effort. one of the things, i think, leadership has to understand right now, we're also excited that there's anything bipartisan going on when the president made that speech, when congress made that move. after that election, we all just thought what's going to happen, what's going to happen, and to see the two sides of the aisle actually working together, i just got to tell you as an american, is a very exciting moment. it would be nice to have a government that functions. >> i will quote politico writing today sort of analyzing the action ahead. they write, top dems tell us if president obama is going to have a big legacy accomplishment this term, it has to be immigration. there's not going to be a fiscal grand bargain, no signs a comprehensive gun-control package is feasible. so the president wants immigration to pass. >> i'm not sure i agree with that conclusion that we're not going to get some sort of really good, productive, meaningful gun
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legislation, but no question the president has invested in pursuing immigration reform. he's, obviously, putting a lot of capital on the line in a way he did not before the election, but that's what we have elections for. they are clarifying, and the republicans were not unaware of the election results, they are not unaware of how badly they are doing with the latino community. it's not just latinos and immigrants who care about this. anyone who cares about the future of america, the future of our economy, cares about this. >> humane, not living in the dark veil. >> i think that, you know, you will find many republicans who are not going to come around to this issue, whether because they really believe it, or because they are responding to the politics of the right, but i think there will be enough republicans who come to the conclusion that they may lose their seats if they don't join the president in passing immigration reform. may not be a majority, as david said, or as the congressman said.
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you may not be able to get a majority of republicans in the house caucus to go along, but if the senate passes something, you're going to have real pressure on enough house republicans to do something i think they'll go unlost to boehner and cantor and say, look, we're going to lose our seats if you don't allow a vote. i don't care if they'll be with us, i need to cast a vote for this. >> i think you'll see a republican party very divided. i agree with david, it's an important moment, different moment, because you had an election which mattered, showed the strength and power of the latino community and the organizing that helped elect president obama, but you have within the republican party people who don't want to bring 11 million or more latinos into the voting block, because the pew research study shows the latino community is not a republican community. it supports government, it supports all kinds of things an
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thetical to the republican party. it's going to be a battle, but one thing critical to note, i know we don't want to get too much into the weeds, but this country has spent over $200 billion on law enforcement over the last quarter century. president obama and, you know, i'm critical of this, because i think the real thing is the economy matters, and that's why we've had almost zero immigration in the last few years. >> the pew research center -- >> the deportation policies of the obama administration have been very tough. i don't know where they go to get more security, which is the trigger in this bill. >> that's a great point. congressman, i wanted to ask you about this, the big sort of dividing line seems to be this trigger, senator proposal links any kind of path towards citizenship with stronger border security. the president is unwilling to make that concession, decoupled the two. that looks like the line that is going to be fought over. i ask you, as someone from texas who is in texas right now, what
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is this obsession and this reliance on border security, given the fact that from 1995 to 2010, migration from mexico to the u.s. was four times that of migration the other way, but from 2005 to 2010, it was effectively even. we've leveled out here. >> well, you know, that's right, and if there's a commission set up like that and you've got rick perry and jan brewer and others on there, then they have no political incentive to ever say the border is secure. the fact is, when president bush was reelected in 2004, there were 10,000 border patrol agents along the border. today with president obama, there are 21,000. no president in american history has committed as many resources and as much manpower to securing the border as this president has, so those measurements need to be objective and they can't be left to the subjective whims of folks who don't have a political incentive to say the
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border is secure. >> before we let you go, congressman, we know democrats are mobilizing efforts to turn texas blue. what do you think of those efforts? are we getting closer to cobalt? >> i think we are. i think the republican party in texas especially, quite frankly, has gone off the rails. you have the hard right that now controls the party in texas as their elected leaders, so there are many of us working very hard who believe that the interests and the values of everyday texans are not served by the people, by the republicans in office right now. >> congressman joaquin castro for episode one of the castro chronicles. thank you for joining us, as always. >> thank you, alex. coming up, baltimore ravens' star ed reed prepares for the biggest game of his life by describing the lingering effects of concussions. we will discuss just ahead. for your first day?
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[ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. president obama recently voiced his concerns about football safety and head trauma. the latter is something his interview parter, secretary of state hillary clinton, knows all too well. >> i have a lot of sympathy now when i pick up the paper and read about an athlete or soldier who has traumatic brain injury. >> congressman bill pascrell and chris nowinski next on "now." (announcer) make mornings special,
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things are going to happen, concussions, you're going to have your broken bones, everything else. that's going to happen. but i think for the most part, you know, we as football players, we know what we signed up for. >> that was baltimore ravens' safety bernard pollard on super bowl media day yesterday. pollard set off a media frenzy earlier this week when he said he doesn't think the nfl will exist in 30 years because of the frequency of injuries. the only thing i'm waiting for, and lord i hope it doesn't happen, is a guy dying on the field. we've had everything else happen there except a death. it came the same day the players union announced it would sign up for a research project on long-term football health risks. this past weekend president obama weighed in on the issue, quote, i'm a big football fan, but if i had a son, i'd have to think long and hard before i let him play football. i think those of us who love the sport are going to have to
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wrestle with the fact it's going to change gradually to try to reduce some of the violence. harvard researchers say on average the life span of a football player is 20 years shorter than that of the average american man. nfl players and families have 5500 concussion-related lawsuits pending in the league. one, the family of junior seau. seau was diagnosed with cte, a degenerative brain disease. two other football legends committed suicide last year, david duerson shot himself in the chest, leaving a note requesting his brain be used for research and described his condition saying, his brain was falling off. his wife said he couldn't remember things from five minutes ago. joining the panel now is democratic congressman bill pascrell of new jersey and from boston, co-director of the
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center for the study of traumatic encephelopathy. thanks for being here. >> you funded the task force about 12 years ago. >> that's correct. >> this is one of america's national pastimes. what do you think can be done legislatively to work on this problem, to move the ball proverbially forward. >> we had a young man killed in my district, ryan, montclair gh school, got injured in a football game in september, concussion, went back into the game in october and got another concussion and died on the field. i went to that funeral, and if i weren't convinced before, i was convinced then that i had to work harder. since 2000 we've been working on this, to get something done in the house. so, we introduced legislation.
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it's never the end all, never the silver bullet that fixes everything up, but it would allow us to set standards across this country as to what we should permit and not permit and give guidance. we were going to bring professionals together, not the congress, and let them decide what are the protocalls for handling what goes on on the field. we're not only talking about football injuries. in fact, there are more young ladies that are injured because the protection around the brain is very different for a young lady than it is for our hard heads. and i know a gal from marble high school in new jersey, nikki had 11 concussions. she had five in an area of a few months, and she can never play the game again, and she's an excellent student. she was on one of our panels on washington at one time. and this is what i see every day, day in, day out. get this, we started this
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commission, this task force, and chris will tell you, he's done a fantastic job, you'll talk to him in a moment, we started this task force before iraq and afghanistan, before the signature injuries of those two wars, which are tbi and post-traumatic stress disorder. i keep an eye on many of the soldiers i met during my travels to iraq and afghanistan, see how they are doing from this. it's a long story, but i went beyond your question on politics. >> that's the whole point of this show. let me ask you, in terms of regulating this stuff, there's a narrative about government overstepping its bounds and something that is so precious to america, that is such a cultural touchdown, do you feel there is bipartisan support to regulate safety? >> our task force is bipartisan. you can fit us in a phone booth ten years ago, now we've got over 125 people that are on both sides of the aisle. this is critical. not only sports, any kind of an injury. there's 1,800,000 people
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affected by traumatic brain injury every year. i fell off a motorcycle 30 years ago, never got back on one again to drive one, anyway. we learn the hard way sometimes, but we can talk about preventing it, equipping, knowing what you're doing out there on the field, whether it's rugby, football, tennis, it does not matter. these things can happen just like that and change your whole life. >> chris, let's bring you in as our scientist here, how prevalent is this in the nfl and how debilitating is it, these kinds of injuries? >> well, there's two types of injuries. with concussions, what the data says is probably half of the nfl players each season are getting concussions, although very few are actually reporting the injury, and then when you talk about the long-term consequences with chronic encephelopathy, 33 of the first 34 players that we've examined at boston
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university school of medicine were positive for the disease, so we have a lot of concerns, this is pretty widespread at the professional level, and we've also found it in athletes as young as 17 playing football. the biggest concern we have is about children. >> chris, let me ask why is it happening now? everybody has a theory, right, the game is being played faster and harder, the guys are bigger. do you have an analysis, is it the science for detecting this better, why are we focused on this now, why weren't we 20 years ago? >> we've never looked for it before. congressman pascrell has been a real leader on this and doing it before it was cool, but only in the last few years have we been able to see this disease in football players, because we started looking for it. now everywhere we look, we find it. the issue is just now we know it exists and is widespread, we have to move forward. it's impossible to ignore, especially when you kind of can see the physical damage in these injuries, see the disease as
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this dark stain on these brains that you know is really shut them down. >> david, we were talking during the break about the game and the changing of the game and your days working in the football chronicles, and roger goodell said this about cte earlier this month, we need to have a lot more research because there's still, unfortunately, a lot of unknowns. the nfl is in a tricky position on this. on one hand, they want to make sure their players are safe, careers, 5500 lawsuits is not a position any organization wants to be in. on the other hand, there's a question fans want bigger hits, whether they've gotten used to the game at this speed, with this force. >> i think they have to walk another plank as they don't want us, as fans, implicated when we watch the game. they don't want us to feel bad when we sit down with the pizza and beer on sunday and watch the super bowl. they don't want us thinking what price, the young man who died was from my hometown, montclair,
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as people get bigger, so much faster. we have quarterbacks that come in at 270 now, and you're going to need great big guys just as fast. what kind of helmet is going to prevent those two kind of objects coming together and not doing a tremendous amount of damage? >> what david says something our sports correspondent, david zaran had a story last year, the nfl has really covered up quite a bit. it took this players lawsuit to get the nfl to acknowledge that it hid research that demonstrated a connection between football and head injuries. so, you have a major force in this sport, but to the congressman's credit, he expanded it. years ago, jack newfield, a great reporter, did a whole series for us on the boxing world. my memory was senator mccain had
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hearings, and those who say you need to change the culture of america before you change the culture of football, that's a copout, like the gun control discussion. >> hearings in washington, and i think he was straight forward. we brought folks in that played in the national football league, and it was a sad thing to talk to a lot of these guys, because they are off many times in another planet, and i say that not minimizing it. i say that from my heart. >> it's a tragedy. >> it is. and goodell, i think, has his finger on this. he got clobbered when he tried to deal with the saints deal, the new orleans saints, and here we are pounding our chest, oh, this guy was suspended for -- if he did it, he should have been thrown out of the league, period. now he's going to be coming back into the league. i think goodell has the right slant. i think he wants to be helpful, and i give him a lot of credit. and i usually don't do that with those commissioners.
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>> do katrina's point about the culture, i think something is changing in the culture. i was on a plane this weekend, bought a lot of magazines for the trip, "sports illustrated," "esquire," "gq." i'm the demographic the n is appealing to. all of them had articles, each one of the three, super bowl week, super bowl month, all of them had articles about violence in football. >> we're on this show talking about it. >> players committing violence. if the demographic who should be watching football is reading that, seeing that on shows like this, reading that in the magazines they read, the nfl has a tremendous image problem, and it is in our culture now. >> something good came out of these wars we're coming out of, that is the research and development that happened with our soldiers. you have to go to the hospitals and talk to these guys. seven, eight years ago, they would have been given up on, mouth service, but now we're really involved in trying to help them and their families
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come back together in society. and if we don't, so many fall through the cracks and wind up like this brave football player, unfortunately kills himself. and, you know, a lot of these soldiers, if we don't attend to them, they are going this way, they are going to be alone and by themselves even if the families in the house. we've got to respond to traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder. that's what i want to be about and get more and more congressmen involved in this. it's a bipartisan approach and we ought to use this in other problems. bill pascrell and chris nowinski, thank you so much for joining us from boston. go ravens. coming up, mo knows. massachusetts governor deval patrick taps john kerry's soon to be vacant senate seat, but who replaces mo cowan? we weigh the possibilities just ahead. [ male announcer ] when was the last time something made your jaw drop?
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what a privilege, seriously, to work with you and now to work with you in a different way. i thank you, very, very much. [ applause ] >> newly minted secretary of state john kerry opens up a spot in the upper chamber. we'll look at massachusetts' newest senator and what it means for the state's coming special election up next. [ coughs ] [ angry gibberish ] [ justin ] mulligan sir. mulligan. take a mulligan. i took something for my sinuses, but i still have this cough. [ male announcer ] truth is, a lot of sinus products don't treat cough. they don't? [ male announcer ] nope, but alka seltzer plus severe sinus does it treats your worst sinus symptoms, plus that annoying cough. [ angry gibberish ] [ fake coughs ] sorry that was my fault sir. [ male announcer ] alka seltzer plus severe sinus. [ breathes deeply ] ♪ oh, what a relief it is! [ male announcer ] try alka seltzer plus severe sinus day and night for complete relief from your worst sinus symptoms.
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yesterday, john kerry was overwhelmingly confirmed by his senate colleagues to become the next secretary of state. this morning, deval patrick announced he appointed his former chief of staff, william "mo" cowan to take kerry's senate seat until a special
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election on june 25th. ed markey, 19-terms, only democrat thus far that wants the seat. officials close to scott brown said that brown is leaning strongly towards running and will likely enter the race next week. david carr, how about appointing your chief of staff to fill a vacant senate seat, is that a good idea? >> if i were, say, the mayor of new york city, i might turn toward the deputy mayor and say, you know what, i'm about done, and i know you know where all the buttons are, howard, please, take over and run this. >> new york city can only hope, howard. >> big shoes, big shoes. don't want to fill those big shoes. >> who's your call, brown, ma h markey? >> i think he'll lightly support brown again. he's been the kind ever, in our opinion, the kind of moderate republican we need more of in the senate. again, friends of ours in the
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left will not be happy about that, but if we're talking about the value of bipartisanship, having a republican is a good thing. >> i don't think scott brown is a moderate republican. we've had this passionate conversation about the lineup, but let me get passionate about something, i don't think any senator, republican or democrat, should serve by appointment. the 17th amendment was designed to end the corrupt appointment process. there was a loophole carved out, so in this case, we're seeing it pretty blatantly, more blatantly than other times. >> log rolling in our time. sorry we couldn't treat america -- >> i want to see the list of acceptable republicans to katrina some time, the list -- >> david, to be fair, scott brown got more money from the financial industry in the last senate race than any republican running. >> a fair point. unfortunately, we have to leave it there. thank you to howard, katrina, and david. that's all for "now." see you back tomorrow when i'm joined by richard wolffe, maggie
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optionsxpress by charles schwab. right now on "andrea mitchell reports," gabby giffords returns to deliver a passionate appeal for gun laws. >> speaking is difficult, but i need to say something important. violence is a big problem. too many children are dying. too many children. we must do something. it's will be hard, but the time is now. you must act.


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